Created: 2011-07-07 16:13
Updated: 2019-02-19 11:21
License: mit




Time Machine File System is a read-only virtual filesystem which helps you to read your Apple's time machine backup.

This filesystem does not targets performances, it has been written for a friend who has lost his macbook and wants to recover its data on Linux.

It's actually not perfect, feel free to report bugs or suggestions at [][].


How to use it?

First you have to mount your HFS partition, by doing something like:

mount /dev/sdXX /mnt/hfs-root

Then as root run:

tmfs /mnt/hfs-root /mnt/tm-root -ouid=$(id -u),gid=$(id -g),allow_other

Then as a normal user, go to the directory /mnt/tm-root/ and enjoy your data! :-)


  • c++
  • cmake >= 2.8
  • boost >= 1.42.0 (earlier versions may also work, but are untested)
  • fuse

How to build and install it?

Manually, run these commands:

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=/usr/local ..
DESTDIR=install-test make install

Then if the installation looks ok to you in install-test/ do make install as root with sudo make install.


Time Machine structure:

Snapshot root: ${hfs_root}/Backups.backupdb/${comp_name}/${date}/${disk_name}/

Hardlink count equals to dir_id: ${hfs_root}/Backups.backupdb/${comp_name}/${date}/${disk_name}/.../Folder

Real folder with data: ${hfs_root}/.HFS+ Private Directory Data/dir_${dir_id}/

Our representation:

/${comp_name}/${date}/${disk_name}/${Real root}

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